Q. What are the benefits of having a mobile app and why do I need one?

A. First of all, over 20 billion apps have been downloaded on Apple and Android devices since 2009. The growth rate is staggering and consumers now make more purchases through a mobile device than they do on a computer. Virtually every business will have a mobile app as they do with a website. It’s not a question of “why” anymore but “when”.

Q. Mobile app vs. mobile website?

A. A business should really have both. The app is interactive while the website is static. Apps have a ROI of 61% while websites represent a 39% ROI. The mere fact that people always have a phone on their person and are always reachable represents the difference. Push notifications to a mobile device have a 97% open rate, while email marketing is luck to achieve 3% open rate. Having both platforms ensures a comprehensive marketing presence.

Q. How long does it take to create and build a mobile application?

A. Design and development time depend on how much content needs to be added and the functionality required. Design time can range from 2 weeks to 30 days on average. Basic functionality as defined and described that we offer can reasonably fall into this timeframe too. If there is any custom functionality needed results can vary widely and FarmAppetit may NOT be able to fulfill this request. There is additional time required for the App Store Approval Process defined below.

Q. What is the process for designing a mobile application?

A. From concept to publishing the app, we can manage all phases of the project in a collaborative format using interactive online technologies for meetings and updates. We can adapt our development lifecycle methodologies to meet the technical specifications of each project and determine resources needed depending on the app complexity within the 10 step process defined below.

1. Define project scope
2. Understand target audience
3. Discuss resources needed and design time required
4. Integrate branding and graphical elements
5. Integration with new or existing software
6. Provide first round of reviews / link to app demo
7. Make revisions / send second round of reviews / link to app demo
8. Submit to app stores for approval
9. Make revisions – if necessary for app store approval / final link to app demo
10. Publish / Go Live

Q. What is the Approval Process for the App Stores?

A. Apple has at least a 2-3 week turn around for approval and have a much more stringent set of guidelines and requirements than the Android Marketplace. Apple often rejects apps and this can lengthen the process considerably so we strive to meet their strict criteria up front to avoid these frustrating delays.

Q. Is my app free or do people pay for it?

A. Given the current function defined on our website, the main purpose of these apps are to be a marketing platform in which you can easily communicate, market and sell through directly to your customer base. These apps are NOT intended to have any fee associated with them, rather they are a vehicle in which to increase exposure of your products and drives sales. You want them to be a FREE download for customers and should promote them as such.

Q. What is the best way to market my mobile app  to my customers?

A. I provide below a Mobile Marketing Handbook on the best way to get your mobile app exposure, so be sure to read this guide.

Q. What is the current trend toward purchasing through a mobile device?

A. We have a few infographics below that illustrate the current trends and exploding growth in mobile. Take some time to review these so you will learn about this hot technology and understand how this will reinforce your decision to invest in mobilizing your marketing.

Q. What will my ROI be with this investment in mobile?

A. Here are 8 reasons why you should make an investment in mobile. The mobile app becomes another sales channel in which to sell products. You should easily be able to pay for the design fee and annual hosting fee within the first 6 months.

8 Reason to have a mobile application:

1. Customers spend more when using online & mobile apps.
2. Customers are already using food/product ordering apps. 40% of these customers have already placed an order online.
3. It keeps your business fresh.
4. Stay ahead of your competitors.
5. You can share information and generate business. Nearly 40% of customers report that they’d like to get notified of promotions or deals for purchases.
6. Mobile orders boost return business.
7. Mobile orders can become a significant percentage of your business.
8. You’ll make more money.

Q. What are “push notifications”?

A. Push notifications are text messages that you can send to customers to alert them about events, news or sales without the need to have them actually open the application. This is one of the best ways to communicate directly with customers and prompt sales activity. The message will pop-up on the customer’ phone- they must click “Close” or “View”. Push notifications have a 97% read rate – compared to an email newsletter that only has a 4% read rate.

Push notifications get store under the Messages tab on your mobile app. This tab stores all of your previously send messages to allow your customers to view messages later in case they had missed them initially. You can send out as many push notifications as needed – though 3-4 per month or 1x per week should be enough. NOTE: It is important to adhere to anti-spamming laws and only send messages to customers who have “opted in” or agreed to receive such messages. There will be a message that will automatically ask this “opt in” question when your app is downloaded and opened for the first time. Research shows that you can expect a response to a message within an hour after sending.

Q. What is a GPS coupon?

A. GPS coupons allow you to give a FREE item to customers that frequent your business. They can pull up your mobile app and “check in” when they are within a certain distance of your location. You set limits on how often, weekly, monthly etc.

Q. Will my current CSA Software integrate with the mobile application?

A. We provide a shopping cart function which enables direct in-app sales transactions, however at this time we don’t support CSA software integration within the app. We can also provide a link inside the mobile application directly to your ordering system on your website OR we CAN integrate an M-commerce solution such as Volusion.